Stonehenge is a prehistoric monument without parallel. Stonehenge voted 'Britain's Best Historic Site' and 'UK's top wonder in a list of the country's unmissable attractions, the ancient site also topped a survey of the 'Seven Wonders of Britain'. Part of an ancient landscape, Stonehenge is one of the most thought-provoking and keenly debated ancient monment in the world.
How to get to Stonehenge
Stonehenge was erected between 3,000 BC and 1,600 BC by no less than three different cultures and its orientation on the rising and setting sun has always been one of its remarkable features. Whether this was simply because the builders came from a sun worshipping culture, or because - as some scholars believe - the circle and its banks were part of a huge astronomical calendar, remains a mystery to this day.
Now designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site, Stonehenge is surrounded by the remains of ceremonial and domestic structures, some older than the monument itself. Altogether, the site covers some 2,600 hectares and comprises over 400 scheduled monuments.
Thanks to Stonehenge's shaped stones, unique jointing and perfect geometry, this amazing feat of engineering is not only the most sophisticated stone circle in the world, it is also unique in that it is the only one to have lintels around the top. The name Stonehenge - literally 'hanging stones' - is thought to originate from Anglo-Saxon times.
The Stones themselves came from two sources: the smaller bluestones from the Preseli Mountains in South Wales, and the larger Sarsen stones from the Marlborough Downs some twenty miles away. Interestingly, what we see today is only about half the original monument - some stones have fallen down, while others have been taken away to be used for building elsewhere.
View a virtual tour of the World Heritage Site on the English Heritage website or find out more about visiting Stonehenge.
Visiting Stonehenge is easy, it is located just off the A303 / A344 and near the A360 roads (the Postcode for Stonehenge for Sat-Nav is SP4 7DE) The easiest way to visit stonehenge is by joing a guided tour.
There are a number of walking and cycling routes to take you to Stonehenge - crossing the very busy A303 is best avoided. Some of the best routes can be accessed from Amesbury where there is an inderpass under the A303 which will also lead you to Durrington and the other important archaeological sites of Durrington Walls and Woodhenge.
Opening Times for Stonehenge
Member (Join now) Free
Adult £7.50 (From 1 April £7.80)
Child (5-15) £4.50 (From 1 April £4.70)
Concession £6.80 (From 1 April £7.00)
Family (2 adults, 3 children) £19.50 (From 1 April £20.30)
Overseas Visitor Pass Available
Further Pricing Details
Members FREE (English Heritage, National Trust for England and Scotland, CADW, Historic Scotland, Manx National Heritage and Royal Oak) Please note: all education group visits to Stonehenge must be pre-booked
6 Apr 2012 9:30 - 18:00
8 Apr 2012 9:30 - 18:00
9 Apr 2012 9:30 - 18:00
Early May Bank Holiday
7 May 2012 9:30 - 18:00
1 June - 31 August 2012
Monday 9:00 - 19:00
Tuesday 9:00 - 19:00
Wednesday 9:00 - 19:00
Thursday 9:00 - 19:00
Friday 9:00 - 19:00
Saturday 9:00 - 19:00
Sunday 9:00 - 19:00
: Opening times from 20-22 June may be subject to change due to summer solstice. Please call 0870 333 1181 before your visit. Recommended last admission time no later than 30 minutes before the advertised closing time. When weather conditions are bad, access may be restricted and visitors may not be able to use the walkway around the stone circle